The Difference Between Your Character And Your Self

There is a difference between ones character and abilities and ones self.

The skills are temporary, they die with the body, ones self continues. When we compare our skills and personal growth to each other in the process of our self-improvement, we have superiority and inferiority. That is where we get lost in ego. Ego separates us from our true knowledge of what we really are.

According to some spiritual and religious teachings, only an experience of the reality of our being can bring this truth to the forefront of our consciousness and make the change necessary to eliminate separation between beings. Without that we will endlessly destroy each other and ourselves. However, that being the only method seems too limited, how many people will ever achieve that. I believe that there is another way, by contemplation and cultivation of certain simple character traits such as honesty, sincerity, and consistent truth in your words and actions, reflecting upon your actions and trying each day to become a bit better. These things are deeper than mere character traits and skills, these are qualities of your true self.

The difference between qualities of character, skills and abilities has nothing to do with the difference between each of us. That is the separation that must be recognized. Character skills and real self.

Know the difference in all one does, know that the skills of one and the skills of another are different and all are needed. The nuclear physicist may not be able to cook, yet he needs food to live. Who’s skill is superior?

Remember this in all moments of feeling superior to others. Then also remember all ones own faults. Seeing the faults of ones own character will make one realize that one is not so perfect and superior after all. Even if one does not accredit these high self views, beware, they may lurk inside the mind to some degree. Observe yourself constantly and objectively to seek them out even in minor degrees.

Suffering humiliation and failure is a wonderful opportunity to realize that one is not so great, so perfect, so wonderfully superior to the rest, or even mildly better. Accept these hardships with gratitude and appreciation and then the lesson will be learnt.

Remember the difference between what one is and what one can do, those are just skills that are given to one like a fast sports car compared to a truck, each has its use, but neither is better than the other.

The danger is falling into low self esteem or self deprecation. Putting oneself down without realizing that the only effect that is having is in destroying ones self confidence and ability to function in the world. This is why these practices must be done with the availability of a guide, teacher, or mature person who has walked this path to guide one. There will be many questions on the way, know it or not, confusions and dilemmas that cannot be resolved, and this is the time that wisdom is required. Do not hesitate to contact your teacher, or whom you turn to for wisdom and objective opinions.

Is a dog a nice pet or a tasty meal. Is a room large or small, warm or cool. What is right and what is wrong. All these are opposing each other, all these are subjective views of the same thing. See things as they are, objectively. See yourself see others, see all things objectively without placing good or bad on them. That is all. Do this as often as your mind will allow you to remember to do it whenever you are having an opinion or determining the nature of something. These examples show the false nature of things, illusion.

Find the true nature of all things, people, situations by seeing it as it is, not as you want it to be, or as your personal response to it is. Your opinion is yours alone, you cannot describe something as large or small, tasty or distasteful, that is your opinion alone.

Practice this exercise, when describing something, do not use words that oppose something, do not say large or small since that is relative. If you are referring to size, then give that in feet or inches, do not say warm or cool, give the approximate temperature. Be accurate and objective, describe and speak of everything as it is. There is the truth. If you want to find truth and peace in your life, then you must live with it, and that means, right speech, right thought, right action.

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3 Responses to The Difference Between Your Character And Your Self

  1. Andy December 1, 2011 at 11:10 pm #

    Useful and practical, I can apply this all the time in my day to day life. Thank you 🙂

  2. Ande Schurr December 4, 2011 at 8:31 pm #

    Thanks David, I will try this exercise of saying things accurately rather than using relative terms.

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